Skip to main content

tv   British Liberal Democrat Conference  CSPAN  September 30, 2012 9:00pm-9:45pm EDT

9:00 pm
>> for a dvd copy of this program call 1-877-662-7726. for free transcripts or to give us your comments about this program, visit us at www.q-and- "q&a" programs are also available as c-span podcasts. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] >> i go through the trouble a few years ago of making a speech about some award in canada. i talked about the so-called citizen journalist. i said i would not address journalism as much as the citizen -- and you need to work with a discipline. the ledgers and some of the others -- give the real thing a
9:01 pm
very bad name. >> next sunday, 60 minutes with morley saufer and his career -- >> see the first of the presidential debates wednesday, live, on c-span, c-span radio and next, remarks by nick clegg, then assemplbly speeches by the president of egypt. then another chance to see "q and a" with jeff colvin of "fortune" magazine. jess braden previews the cases that will be heard in the supreme court. libertarian candidate gary
9:02 pm
johnson takes your questions. and ariel frankel looks at the budget for the federal transit authority. "washington journal," live on c-span. the british house of commons is in recess. in place of "prime minister's questions," liberal democrat leader nick clegg. they formed a coalition with the conservatives in 2010 when no party won a majority. he apologized for going against his policy of not raising tuition fees. he outlines his future beyond the next election and 2014.
9:03 pm
this is about 40 minutse. -- minutes. ♪ >> thank you. let me start -- let me start. colleagues, this summer, as we cheered our athletes to gold after gold, britain remembered how it feels to win again. and we remembered what it takes to win again. david weir -- the message was
9:04 pm
the same. we may be the ones on the podium but behind each of us is a coach, and behind the coach, a team, and beyond the team, the supporters. and behind them, a whole city, an entire country -- the u.k. nations, united behind one goal. what a contrast from a year ago. when england's cities burned in a week of riots and the images were not of athletes running to the finish line, but the mob running at police lines. when the flames climbed not from the olympic torch but a furniture shop in soutland. a 140-year-old business that survived two world wars, razed
9:05 pm
to the ground. even then -- we saw our country's trouue character when residents came out on the streets to clear up the mess. and this summer, when the reeves furniture shop -- decked with photos of young people with messages of hope. and who put those pictures up? young volunteers and an 81-year- old man named morris reeves, who ran the shop before handing it over to his son. morris, your example should inspire a generation. [applause]
9:06 pm
>> to think -- [applause] >> what morris has shown is that paralympians reminded us that success doesn't come easy or quick. or a culture of recent celebrity obscures -- real achievement takes time, effort, perserverence, and resillience. a victim of a roadside bomb in afghanistan -- a businessman, attacked serving his customer. up and down the country -- keep going, keep trying.
9:07 pm
and these are the qualities. this will see our country through these tough times, and these are the qualities that will guide our party through tough times, too. let us take our example from the british people as we embark on the journey ahead. from the opposition to the hard realities of government, and our country, to the rewards of shared prosperity. two journeys linked. the success of each depending on the success of the other. neither will be easy or quick. and it will be in no doubt. if we have our countries future -- we will secure our own.
9:08 pm
[applause] as a politician, you get used to criticism and praise from the strangest quarters. but even i was taken by surprise from the comments i recieved from the daily telegraph. it priaseaised my judgment and policies. it was by alexander boris johnson. [laughter] >> at least he has one party leader he'll endorse in public. [applause] time ofes ,w, we are in a
9:09 pm
profound change. here in britain, we're faced with the task of a new economy from the rubble of the old. the eurozone faces the biggest crisis since it was forme.d d. countries like indonesia and china grow in a phenomenal rate. the consequences in the shift in power -- should we fail to respond, cannot be overstated. our influence in the world -- our ability to fund the public services, and mantain our culture of openness. all of them are in the balance. power would move away from the
9:10 pm
liberal and democratic world, and within it, too. to moderates and hardliners, and those committed to the politics of cooperation and those hellbent on confrontation. if history taught us anything, it is that extremists thrive in tough times. iour country will pay a heavy political price. but the human cost will be higher, still. we would leave a trail of victims -- so to those who ask what we could do -- cutting public spending. who suffers most when governments go bust? when they can no longer pay
9:11 pm
salaries, benefits, and pensions. not the bankers or hedge fund managers. it is the poor, the old, the infirm. those with the least to fall back on. labour may have thought it was funny after crashing the economy to leave a note on david's desk saying there was no money left. but this is no joke to those labour claims to represent but let down the most. let's not take any more stories about betrayal. it is labour who got us into austerity and it is the liberal democrats who will get us out. [applause]
9:12 pm
plays debate we're having out across the continent. the debates with those who understand how much the world has changed, and the need to adapt to those changes. this will depend on the outcome as in the coming years, some countries will get their own house in order. some will not. those who do will set their own priorities, write their budgets, and set their future. those who don't will find their
9:13 pm
right to self-determination withdrawn from the markets and new rules from their creditors. that this will never happen to us is blindly assumed. it is the decisions we take as a government, and a party, that will determine if we succeed or fail. for the first time, the future is ours to make. [applause] our journey to prosperity -- starts with economic rescue, delivering growth. the sacrifices it belongs --
9:14 pm
they could be in a fantasy world with no boom and bust and the money never runs out. but there is no silver bullet that will instantly solve all our economic problems. some of them are structural. all will take time to overcome. we are dealing with a surge in global energy, food, and commodity prices, and a banking collapse more than four years on, is blocking the arteries of our economic system. the idea it is -- if the government regulates it more, or borrows and spends more, we
9:15 pm
would achieve long and lasting growth is not credible. if you're being attacked by liam fox by one side and edwin on the other, you're in the right place. [applause] what we need is a plan that is tough enough to keep the bond markets off our back. that is loudest -- allowed us to and ar psendin spending cuts plan that will see public ofnding account for 42 % gdp, higher than any point between 1995 and 2008 when the
9:16 pm
banks collapsed. and because it has the confidence of the market, we have room to create a business bank and an 80 billion pound funding for lending, the biggest of its kind anywhere in the world. so much of this is about perception. is how muchtell you they have to legistlate for. let's not let the charicature go unchallenged. if it was as dogmatic as the critics claim, i'd demand a plan b. you were right.
9:17 pm
overwhelming rejecting the call for us to change the economic course. we took big and bold steps to boost growth and stand ready to do so again and again. until self-sustaining growth returns. [applause] of course -- of course, arguments about economic theory are no interest to the millions struggling to get by now. whose earnings barely cover child care. the builder who does not know if he will be laid off. the couple wanting to buy a home but can't raise the money for a
9:18 pm
deposit. to them and all the other hard- working families, i say this. the liberal democrats are on your side and we are in government to serve you. with real, practical help. this would raise it to 10,000 pounds. the task of making ends meet is made a little bit easier. the last budget, we made too big announcements. we will send 3 billion pounds, increasing the tax reallowance. with 50 million pounds.
9:19 pm
recouping five times that amount. i insisted, on the first and i conceded on the second. i stand by the package as a whole. as liberals we want to see the tax on work reduced, and the system as a whole, for those with middle incomes. let me make one thing clear. we have brought this level down, and this is still higher than the route labour's 13 years in office. and it will be reduced further in this parliament.
9:20 pm
[applause] all of the future cuts in taxation, as part one will clearly a test, to help people on low and middle income get on. all the parties will have to knowledge -- acknowledge this and that is inescapable. but who will have to tighten their belts the most? if we have to tell people to take less out, we will start with the richest and work our way down. we will do this in our own way.
9:21 pm
we will not gather ourselves to a detailed spending plan, and we should be proud of the fact airerwe have delivered f taxes and we are taking 2 million people out of income tax together. with more than 20 million others. and we should never lose the opportunity to tell people about this. our tax cuts, these are not stand alone consumer offers. this is part of a more broad agenda. with the hard social ability, in a fast-changing world. this is our mission and our
9:22 pm
policies either serve the purpose were they serve none at all. [applause] other things about governing, we have to confront the inconvenience truths that the opposition's ignored. over the last 15 years, our economy has grown threefold, and to sustain our spending, we are still borrowing 1 billion pounds every three days. we now spend more servicing the national debt than we do in our schools. these three facts present us
9:23 pm
with a fundamental challenge. to completely redirect so this no longer undermines prosperity. how we do that and how we reshape the british state for the economic challenges of the 21st century is a debate that i want our party to lead. there are only two ways of doing this. to get yourself on the popular side of each issue or by leading opinion, and standing on the futures side of each issue. the big prizes are for those with the current ambition to get out in front and set the agenda, to point the way. let's take the lead in building a new economy or the new century.
9:24 pm
and the biggest singles market, not the debt fuel consumption. driven by the advances in science and research. and a clean, green economy, with the low carbon technologies, leading the world. [applause] i have to tell you, in the last half, the most short-sighted of arguments, that we have to choose between going green. this is not just the right thing to do, this is a fantastic
9:25 pm
opportunity. the economy in britain is going strong we're right now. to create thousands of jobs, and the technology that will power a economies in the decades to come. going green, means going for growth. more energy that we produce ourselves, as a planet that we can proudly and over to our children. and going green means -- but the conservatives know there is no doubt that we will hold on to their promises on the environment. [applause] of course, there was a time when
9:26 pm
it looked like they got it. it seems like a long time ago, and there is the naturalist face. the windmills are gently turning, the sun is shining, and the exercise is quite brilliant. partyen at last year's conference they ruined it all, that you can vote blue and go green, but of course you can't. in order to at -- in order to make blue turned to green, you have to add yellow. and that is what we are doing. [applause] what a generous audience.
9:27 pm
as we plot to prosperity, please remember that nothing that we do will make a decisive business if we don't make the most important investment of all, in investing in the training of young people. the legacy of the educational inequality is an economy operating at half power, never getting the qualifications that they could get, never turning the wages that they could earn. the true cost of this cannot be counted in pounds alone. this is a huge drag on the economy, but more than that, this is part of the natural justice and everything that we liberal democrats stand for. if you strip away all of the outer layers, what do you find?
9:28 pm
the unshakable belief in freedom. not the libertarian freedoms, but the rich sound of liberal freedom, amplified and sustained by the thing that gives the real meaning, opportunity, and the freedom to be who you are. the opportunity, -- [applause] the freedom to be who you are, the opportunity to be who you could be. this is the liberal promise. and that is why this party has always been the party of education. because just as there can be no
9:29 pm
real freedom without opportunity, there can be no real opportunity without education. and every parent knows how it feels when you lead a child into the first day of school, and that looked to give you before the door closet -- the door closes, and instinct to go with them, to help every step of the way. that is that we should feel about every child. to support them at every stage, from primary to secondary, and to college, university, or more. so the most poor to year-old can now benefit from education. so the most disadvantaged children have the most intense personalized support that they need.
9:30 pm
and we provide scholarships, grants and loans, to help them go on learning and learning. the extra resources will not make a difference unless matched with greater ambition. and that is why money must be accompanied by reform, so all children can read and write, and focus on the performance of every child. to put more pressure on schools -- and not replacing this with the 0-level, but every child will be able to -- to be sure that they do, we will provide a new catch up with an additional 500 pounds for every child that
9:31 pm
leaves primary school. [applause] if you are a parent -- whose child has fallen behind, thwho fears they may be lost in the leap from primary to secondary. and the talk of making exams tougher. we will do what it takes to make sure your child is not left behind. a place in summer school. we provide the help they need. we are raising the bar but ensure every child can clear it, too. [applause]
9:32 pm
i am proud of the resolve we liberlal democrats have shown. we've head real disappointings, election results, a referendum, my song not making it into the top 10. [laughter] >> through it all, we've remained focused and disciplined and it hasn't always been easy. we stuck to our task, and to the coalition agreement as others waivered. to recieve wisdom -- that we would not be capable of the transition. the liberal democrats are a party of protest, not power, they said. two years on, the critics are
9:33 pm
confounded and our mettle has been tested in the toughest of circumstances. we've taken the difficult decisions -- and laid the foundations for a stronger, more balanced economy a stronger mord economy. the task is far from complete. fromarty's journey is far over. i know there are some in the party, some here who face several more years of spending restraints who would rather turn back then press on, bray of our deal with the conservatives and presented to the electorate in 2013 as a party unchanged. gone will be the difficult
9:34 pm
choices, the necessary compromises and gone, too, will be the vitriol of use from right to left as we work every day to keep this conference anchored paired but the choice between the party we were and the party we have become is a false one. the past is gone and it is not coming back. if voters want a party of opposition a stop-the-world-i- want-to-get-off party, there is a better one waiting for you. [applause] there is a better more meaningful future waiting for us not as a third party, but one of three parties of government.
9:35 pm
[applause] there has been a lot of discussion on the fringe of this conference about our party's next steps, about our relationship with the other party, what we should do in the event of another hall of parliament could there's speculation and rumor. but i have to tell you, this is all based on a false and deeply the liberal assumption that it is we rather than the people who get to decide. in a democracy, politicians take their orders from the voters. so let's forget -- [applause] so let's forget all of the westminster gossip and focus on
9:36 pm
what really matters. not our relationship on the other parties, but our relationship with the british people. and imagine yourself standing on the doorstep in 2015. this is what you will be able to say. we cut taxes for ordinary families and made sure the wealthiest pay their fair share. we put money in schools to give every child a chance. we did everything possible to get people into work, millions of new jobs and more practice ships than ever before. and we did the right thing by all the people, too, the biggest ever rise in the tension could get the most important thing, we brought the economy back from the brink and put it on the right path. and then ask them if you are ready to trust labour with your money again? and do you really think the
9:37 pm
tories will make britain fairer? because the truth is only the liberal democrats can be trusted on the economy and relied upon to deliver a fair society, too. and to help get the message out there, i can announce today that -- the 2015 general election team.
9:38 pm
don't let him tell you he doesn't like the limelight here and he does. come on. [laughter] i cannot think of anyone i would rather have by my side. teddy, it is great to have you back. -- patty, it is great to have you back. 60 years ago, before i was born, small groups of liberal activists would meet up to talk politics and plan their campaign. stubborn, principled, they ignored the cynics who mocked them.
9:39 pm
they simply refused to give up on their dreams. the refused to accept that the liberals would never again be in government and the refused to accept that liberalism, that most enlightened british of creeds, which has done so much to shape our task would not shape our future again. we said we have it tough now. but it was much tougher in their day. and it was only their resolve, their resilience and their unwavering determination that kept the flickering flame of liberalism alive through our party is the darkest days. at our last conference, i urge you to start looking in the rearview mirror as returning from the party of opposition that we were to the party of government we are becoming. but before we head off on the next stage of our journey, our u to take one last look in the mirror to see how far that we
9:40 pm
have come. i tell you what i see. i see generations of liberals marching to the sound of gunfire, but i see them going back to their constituencies to prepare. they got there in the end. [applause] these are the people on whose shoulders we stand. the never flinched, and and we see the opportunity that they never had, taking on the special interests and refusing to give up, always overturning gods and fighting for what we believe in because we know that nothing worthwhile can be won without a battle.
9:41 pm
without a free or open society -- that is the prize. so let's go for it. [applause] >> okay -- [applause] see the first of the presidential debates live on c- span.
9:42 pm
next, the u.n. general assembly speeches, and after that, srw"q and a." with q and a. >> we -- are spending the money and we are now, even more, much more spending the money. we are leaving them a mess and it will be difficult to deal with if we are that weak. just think of who wants to come here first and take us over. we are so financially weak we can't do anything. we have to start doing it --
9:43 pm
now. and we could even lose our country. >> ross perot, on the economy, the deficit and debt. and how it has changed since he ran for president. see the article on ross perot, monday night on c- span. >> when nations cheat in trade, i will finally do something the president has not been willing to do and label him a currency manipulator. >> obama and romney meet in their first debate. watch and engage with c-span with a live debate preview,
9:44 pm
followed by two ways to watch the debate. both candidates on screen, and on c-span 2, the multi-camera version. follow our live coverage on c- span, c-span radio, and online at >> egypt's new president, muhammed morsi delivered his first speech at the general assembly. he is the first democratically elected leader following the arab spring. he called on the international community to support palestine like they've supported other countries. this is about 45 minutes.


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on